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Westridge Primary School Exorbitant online fees

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Westridge Primary School

Belvedere

Harare

REF: *DEMAND FOR CLARITY REGARDING ON-LINE LEARNING FEES AND DOWN WARD ADJUSTMENT OF THE SAME.*

Dear: Westridge School Board of Trustees

We, the undersigned, are respectfully petitioning the fees for online learning. The fees are not suitable for the following reasons

  • The charges are not reflective of online learning , the school is charging amounts which are even higher than conventional learning whereas online learning should be cheaper
  • The fees are not taking into cognisance the current Corona pandemic where most earnings have been reduced or completely lost
  • Parents are also facing additional costs such as purchase of laptops, electricity and also data charges
  • The Government has already provided a position that school fees are not to be paid because of uncertainty over when normal learning would resume
  • Parents also have to monitor the learning closely or have to employ supervisors if they are not available thereby increasing costs on the parents
  • The school has failed to justify the exorbitant charges it is imposing as most online platforms being used for the learning are free.

Our recommendations are

  • The school should discontinue demanding payments from parents until a reasonable amount has been agreed with parents’ or their representatives
  • The school adopt a maximum charge of $100 and $50 (USD) per month or equivalent for primary school and ECD respectively
  • Calling for a meeting between the school and the parents’ representatives to iron out the fees issues
  • The school should not discriminate on children based on their payment status whilst negotiations are going on
  • The school should discontinue procuring data on behalf of parents’ from Econet. If the school is in a position to secure subsidized data this should be optional to parents who require it
  • The school should continue using the free online learning platforms where possible and only acquire reasonably priced software for learning and should consult with parents before decisions on purchase of online products
  • Parents’ to discontinue payments until new fee structure has been agreed on
  • The school to stop threatening to deregister students who have not paid

Our wish is to facilitate as little disruption to learners as possible. We support such initiatives and only wish to be consulted within the set parameters that we have always known in setting the path for the future for the school. Parents are available through the same online platforms that you wish to facilitate for our children to be consulted.

We hope this petition will receive favourable attention and urgency.

Kind regards,

Parents of Westridge Primary

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